Penn alum Arthur Muir turns into oldest American to summit Mount Everest at age 75


At 75 several years outdated, 1968 School and 1972 Wharton graduate Arthur Muir (correct) turned the oldest American at any time to arrive at the summit of Mount Everest in May well. (Image from Arthur Muir)

Arthur Muir, a 1968 Faculty and 1972 Wharton graduate, grew to become the oldest American at any time to attain the summit of Mount Everest when he completed the a few-thirty day period expedition in May well.

The 75 calendar year-aged retired company finance attorney from Northbrook, Unwell. broke Monthly bill Burke‘s report as the oldest ever American to summit Everest when finished he summited in 2014 at age 72. Muir is now the third-oldest climber from any nation to access the world’s maximum peak.

Though Muir was aware that he would split the file for oldest American to climb Everest if he have been in a position to attain the summit, he did not think any individual would treatment.

“The actual tale below is not about me, but is about how you can do truly wonderful things even when you happen to be previous,” he said. “You can do a bunch of items, if you just have a aspiration, established out with a strategy, and do the job toward it.”

Muir’s accomplishment garnered media consideration throughout the nation and his tale has been showcased in broadcasts these kinds of as the Nowadays Present. Penn President Amy Gutmann also congratulated Muir for the feat on June 14 in a publish on Instagram.

“Congratulations to Penn alumnus Arthur Muir, C68, WG72, who lately grew to become the oldest American to scale Mt. Everest at the age of 75,” Gutmann wrote. “His perseverance and braveness is all the additional remarkable contemplating he only began mountaineering at the age of 68.”

Muir grew up in Aurora, Colorado — where he initially felt the allure of the mountains — and stated he only climbed a several mountains in higher university and college, like a handful of 14,000 foot large peaks. He was not a higher education athlete at Penn and described himself as an “regular man.”

He graduated from the University in 1968 and, after 3 several years in the Army, he enrolled in Wharton, earning an MBA in 1972. As an undergraduate pupil, Muir was a member of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity in which he built mates with whom he is even now in get in touch with, he said.

Muir reported that although at Penn, he regretted not acquiring been extra adventurous. He recalled that he was “an ok student,” but that he wished he had attempted additional factors, this kind of as lightweight crew or fencing.

Muir only formally began mountaineering at age 68. Muir explained that when he very first started climbing, he envisioned people today to underestimate him due to the fact of his age or inquire questions like “Can you walk?” and “Do you need to have a crutch?,” but stated he uncovered the full reverse.

“When I’m expending 60 times with people, you know, I really don’t have a mirror, so I are not able to see what I search like. I sense like I am 55 for the reason that I won’t be able to see myself,” Muir informed ABC Chicago. “Then at the end, I look in the mirror and say, ‘Oh yes, you are 75.’ But you neglect when you’re with men and women accomplishing all this things.”

Due to the fact he began mountaineering, Muir has climbed volcanoes outside of Quito, Ecuador, scaled Denali in Alaska — North America’s optimum peak — and has even skied off of Mount Elbrus — Europe’s tallest mountain.

Muir has been schooling to climb Everest for above two many years just after previously attempting to summit in 2019. Muir was compelled to halt early in his journey thanks to a sprained ankle just after falling off a ladder.

“I was not ready,” he claimed. “Physically, I was not ready mentally, I manufactured some mistakes.” 

Muir commenced instruction with Uphill Athlete — a company that connects specialist coaches to folks teaching to climb mountains — after his very first endeavor in late 2019. Uphill Athlete trainer Seth Keena-Levin said of Muir’s first Everest try that Muir was not bodily read through to summit Everest when he 1st started off doing the job with him. 

Just after decades of day by day schooling with the Uphill Athlete staff, several hours on an previous NordicTrack equipment, and routines in his garage for the duration of the COVID-19 lockdown, Muir felt all set to attempt once again in 2021. Keena-Levin recounted that he realized Muir was ready this time when he observed how much intense function Muir could do throughout their exercises as well as Muir’s ski journeys and neighborhood hikes.

Following acquiring his COVID-19 vaccine this spring, Muir flew to Nepal and began his journey on March 23. The climb up and down the summit took 12 days overall, and his mountaineering group attained the summit on May well 23.

Expedition leader and expert mountaineer Garrett Madison led the group featuring Muir and at minimum 18 other climbers, including researchers, a dentist, and a former NFL participant. Madison said that he admired Muir’s thoughtfulness and treatment for the climbing team and mountaineering neighborhood. Muir dedicated posts on Instagram to every single of the climbers on his staff as well as the help workers.

“I actually like retaining connected with men and women,” Muir mentioned. “It’s relatively like a cult. A fantastic cult, in a perception.”

Due to Everest’s tricky terrain, mountaineering expeditions normally rely on the help of the Sherpa individuals, who are indigenous to the Himalaya Mountains, to guidebook and navigate them as a result of the tough setting. Muir praised the team’s Sherpa guides Pasang and Dawa Bhote for their help in the reaching the summit.

“I cannot convey to you how a must have Pasang was to my accomplishment. I would by no means have designed it without his assistance,” Muir wrote on Instagram. “This is the particular person who ought to be on the information together with all of the other Sherpas who make these climbs possible.” 

Madison praised the 75 yr-previous for his feat of athleticism, expressing that Muir experienced amazed him with his courage and toughness through the expedition.

“[Muir’s] energy is a combination of mental, physical and emotional toughness,” Madison claimed. “He was unquestionably 1 of the strongest users in all three of individuals regions on our trip.”